O’Reilly'sADO.NET in a Nutshell for Visual Studio .NET is a Microsoft Help 2.0 collection that plugs directly into the Microsoft Visual Studio .NET Integrated Development Environment (IDE). Before you can install this product, the following software must be installed on your system: Any version of Microsoft Visual Studio .NET, including “unbundled” versions of the product, such as Microsoft Visual Basic .NET.
ADO.NET in a Nutshell for Visual Studio .NET is not guaranteed to work with beta or Release Candidate versions of Visual Studio .NET.
ADO.NET in a Nutshell for Visual Studio .NET has no additional requirements.
O’Reilly publishes two versions of ADO.NET in a Nutshell for Visual Studio .NET: one for Visual Studio .NET 2002 (sometimes referred to as Version 1.0) and one for Visual Studio .NET 2003. To install or upgrade ADO.NET in a Nutshell for Visual Studio .NET:
1. Uninstall previous versions of ADO.NET in a Nutshell for Visual Studio .NET.
2. Ensure that either Visual Studio.NET 2002 or Visual Studio .NET 2003 is installed and operational on your system, but not currently running. For information on installing and upgrading Visual Studio .NET, please refer to its installation instructions.
3. Shut down any anti-virus software running on your system..
4. Ensure you are logged in to your system with an account that has administrative privileges. Select the installation file appropriate for the version of Visual Studio .NET that you have installed:
· For Visual Studio .NET 2002 (sometimes referred to as Version 1.0) select ADO.NETinaNutshell-vs2002.msi
· For Visual Studio .NET 2003 (sometimes referred to by its code name Everett) select ADO.NETinaNutshell-vs2003.msi
5. Double-click on the installation file you have selected (ADO.NETinaNutshell-vs2002.msi or ADO.NETinaNutshell-vs2003.msi ) and follow the instructions presented by the installer program. The program will take a few minutes to load while Visual Studio .NET reindexes its Help collection to incorporate the new ADO.NET in a Nutshell for Visual Studio .NET pages.
6. Once the installation is complete, click on Finish and open your copy of Visual Studio .NET. Select Help → Contents… from the Visual Studio .NET menu. Look for the O’Reilly Help icon in the Contents window.
To uninstall ADO.NET in a Nutshell for Visual Studio .NET:
1. From the Windows Control Panel, select Add/Remove Programs.
2. In the Add/Remove Programs window, select O’Reilly ADO.NET in a Nutshell and click Remove.
ADO.NET in a Nutshell for Visual Studio .NET is a special online version of the API Quick Reference section (Part III) of ADO.NET in a Nutshell (O’Reilly & Associates, Inc., 2003), by Bill Hamilton and Matthew MacDonald (ISBN 0-596-00361-7). Once installed, the API Quick Reference is a fully integrated member of Visual Studio .NET Dynamic Help and continuously available to you as you work in the Visual Studio .NET development environment.
By making ADO.NET in a Nutshell a part of your online development environment, you gain the ability to:
· access the ADO.NET API Quick Reference online as you work in the Visual Studio .NET development environment
· browse the API Quick Reference table of contents and find relevant entries using the Visual Studio .NET Help Contents window
· see continuously updated links to API Quick Reference entries displayed in the Visual Studio .NET Dynamic Help window as you code your application
· find Reference entries quickly using the Visual Studio .NET Help Search facility or interactive Index
· link quickly to related API Quick Reference pages using embedded cross-references
· find more information on the members of a given type using the embedded MSDN Library member details URL
· link to the O’Reilly web site, www.oreilly.com, for additional books and articles on Visual Basic .NET and the .NET Framework
For information on how to read API Quick Reference entries, please read Chapter 32, “How to Use This Quick Reference”, of the print version of ADO.NET in a Nutshell.
For a quick overview of the features of the online version of ADO.NET in a Nutshell, you might try the following:
1. Tour the API Quick Reference TOC:
To display the table of contents of the ADO.NET in a Nutshell API Quick Reference, first select Help → Contents… on the Visual Studio .NET menu. Once the Contents window is open, double-click on the O’Reilly Help icon. If the icon fails to appear, select the no filter option from the Filtered by: drop-down list
ADO.NET in a Nutshell appears as a volume in the O’Reilly Help collection, along with other O’Reilly titles you may have installed. The TOC is sorted alphabetically by .NET namespace name (e.g., System.Data, System.Data.Common, System.Data.SqlClient, and so on) and within each namespace by type name (e.g., AcceptRejectRule enum, CommandBehavior enum, and so on). A complete alphabetical listing of all types in the reference is available by selecting Alphabetical List of Types at the end of the TOC.
As an exercise, find and read the entry for the System.Data.Dataset in the Nutshell TOC.
2. View continuously updated links to relevant API Quick Reference entries while you’re coding:
Because ADO.NET in a Nutshell is fully integrated with Visual Studio .NET, you can use the Dynamic Help feature to display links to pertinent API Quick Reference topics as you code. To use Dynamic Help, select Help → Dynamic Help from the Visual Studio .NET menu.
As an exercise, open a Visual C# Console Application and type the statement “using System.Data.Common;” at the top of the page. As you do so, the Help system displays links to API Quick Reference descriptions for the System.Data namespace and then the System.Data.Common namespace in the Dynamic Help window. Note that all links to O’Reilly API Quick Reference pages appear in a separate link group in the Dynamic Help Window that’s labeled O’Reilly Help. Click on an O’Reilly Help link, and note the page that is displayed.
3. Use the Visual Studio .NET Help Index to find API Quick Reference information on a topic:
The Visual Studio .NET Help system includes an index to all Help files, including those from ADO.NET in a Nutshell. To search the Help index, first open the Index window by selecting Help → Index… from the Visual Studio .NET menu. Use the Look For: box to jump to index entries that most closely match what you have in mind. The specific Help pages related to an index entry are displayed in a separate Index Results window. You open an Index Results window by selecting Help → Index Results… from the Visual Studio .NET menu.
As an exercise, open the Index window and an Index Results window and enter “DataSet class” into the Index Look for: box. Click on the Index entry that appears and observe the results displayed in the Index Results window. Double-click on any entry whose Location name is ADO.NET in a Nutshell to see a corresponding page from the API Quick Reference.
4. Search for API Quick Reference information on a specific .NET namespace or type:
To search for information on a particular topic in the API Quick Reference, as well as MSDN and other documentation, select Help → Search from the Visual Studio .NET menu. Enter your search keywords in the Search Look for: box, use the Filter box and check boxes to restrict your search, and then click on the Search button. The specific Help pages most closely related to your search keywords are displayed in a separate Search Results… window. You open a Search Results window by selecting Help → Search Results… from the Visual Studio .NET menu.
As an exercise, use the Search window to find information on the SqlString struct. Type the words “SqlString struct” into the Search Look for: text box and click on the Search button. Double-click on any entry in the Search Results window whose Location is ADO.NET in a Nutshell.
5. Link to other API Quick Reference entries and MSDN Library details
To link to related API Quick Reference entries or MSDN Library member details, simply click on any word or phrase that is underlined and highlighted in blue. Most API Quick Reference entries contain cross-references to pages that document related core types or other information (such as formatting codes and regular expression syntax). In addition, any API Quick Reference entry that documents a type also includes a link to the corresponding Members page in the MSDN Library for additional details not found in the API Quick Reference members list.
As an exercise, use the Index to find the O’Reilly API Quick Reference entry for the DataRelation class. The API Quick Reference entry for each ADO.NET type includes a complete list of its members and their signatures, whose syntax is described using the C# language. For additional information on DataRelation class members, find and click on the link labeled MSDN Library member details.
You can also cross-reference related pages in the API Quick Reference by clicking on their links. As an exercise, return to the DataSet class entry and click on the link to DataTable.
Version 1.0 of ADO.NET in a Nutshell for Visual Studio .NET is the first release of this software and is based on ADO.NET in a Nutshell, (O’Reilly & Associates, Inc., 2003), by Bill Hamilton and Matthew MacDonald. The software will work with any commercial release of Visual Studio .NET, including Visual Studio .NET 2002 with or without Service Pack 1 (SP1), and Visual Studio .NET 2003. Like the book, this reference documents the ADO.NET namespaces and types of the .NET Framework 1.1 release. For a list of backwards and forwards breaking changes developers will encounter in moving between .NET Framework 1.0 and .NET Framework 1.1, please see Compatibility Considerations and Version Changes at the Microsoft-sponsored GotDotNet community website.
The O’Reilly Books filter is a new feature that is not supported by VB.NET Language in a Nutshell or VB.NET Core Classes in a Nutshell. If either of these volumes is installed with Visual Studio .NET, selection of the O’Reilly Books Filter by… option will cause the reference to disappear from the Help Contents window, as well as from the Search Results and Index Results windows. To display all O’Reilly volumes choose the (no filter) Filter by… option.
ADO.NET in a Nutshell for Visual Studio .NET is an experiment for both O’Reilly and Microsoft, and we want very much to hear your comments. Your feedback will help us decide how to make future releases of the product more useful to you whether to create Visual Studio .NET adds for other titles in the O’Reilly .NET Nutshell series.
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Copyright © 2003 O’Reilly & Associates, Inc. All rights reserved. Other companies and products mentioned in this document are the property of those companies.